Cover image for The complete stenciling handbook
The complete stenciling handbook
Buckingham, Sandra, 1944-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Buffalo, N.Y. : Firefly Books, [2002]

Physical Description:
288 pages : color illustrations ; 30 cm
Subject Term:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
NK8654 .B815 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area-Oversize
NK8654 .B815 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
NK8654 .B815 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



Praise for the hardcover edition:
"The ultimate reference for stenciling."
- Booklist

With the simple stencil -- a template that lets you easily create a painted shape on a surface and allows you to repeat the exact pattern wherever and as often as you wish -- you can transform and beautify just about any surface from boxes to walls to floors.

The Complete Stenciling Handbook is a compendium of the latest techniques, tools, equipment and materials. The book presents innovative methods and products that have taken stenciling from a rustic craft to a breathtaking art form. The book features a wide range of step-by-step projects illustrated with color photographs.

Buckingham comprehensively covers the materials needed for successful stenciling projects and explains the qualities of a variety of media such as the differences between latex and oil paints. Clear, easy-to-read text simplifies the often confusing world of materials such as additives, matting agents, glazes, stains, thinners, finish coats and more. The book also includes instructions about when and how to use applicators such as brushes, rollers, sponges and airbrushes.

Creative topics with step-by-step instructions cover:

Shading and paint effects Traditional borders and all-over patterns Freeform stenciling and projection stenciling Imitation textiles Architectural elements, fake marquetry Floor treatments, glass and ceramic tiles Lettering and stenciling on fabric and paper.

The Complete Stenciling Handbook is the best and most comprehensive guide for crafters from beginner to advanced.

Author Notes

Sandra Buckingham is the author of the bestselling Stencilling on a Grand Scale and Creative Cards and Wrappings as well as Stencil It!: Kids Projects and Stencilling: A Harrowsmith Guide , all published by Firefly Books.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

How often can any author, even an expert, authoritatively assert that his or her book is the source of all knowledge on a topic? Rare as that may be, Buckingham's fourth book is, indeed, the ultimate reference for stenciling. Although she claims that mastery of this craft is fairly simple, under her tutelage, stenciling itself becomes a broad-based art, covering not only flat 2-D templates but also application to fabrics, floors, glass, and paper as well as special effects. Every chapter includes a plethora of how-to color photographs and examples, from cutting a stencil to working devore--or "burnt" --on luxurious fabrics. No patterns are included, but the samples can easily be emulated. A useful source for any level of stenciler. --Barbara Jacobs

Library Journal Review

Stencilers who have mastered techniques in beginners' books such as Rebecca Carter's Stenciling for the First Time will be ready to tackle the more advanced exercises here. Buckingham (Stencil It!) provides a sourcebook of methods and materials for stenciling on walls, ceramics, leather, or textiles. Unusual techniques include damask (simulated fabric), impasto (built-up design), and faux moldings. There are step-by-step instructions for techniques but no separate projects. The excellent color illustrations throughout make this a basic source for the craft. Highly recommended for all types of crafts collections. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



Introduction to Chapter 1: Before You Start In its most basic form, a stencil is a very simple tool: a template that allows a precise shape to be easily painted on a surface and the exact pattern to be repeated wherever and as often as you wish. Templates made of tin, leather, paper and other materials have long been used by people all over the world to create painted decoration. For hundreds of years, the methods employed by stencilers changed very little -- one would apply a small amount of paint through the opening in a template, stipple it out evenly, lift the template and move on. Twentieth-century technology changed many things, and sooner or later, it was bound to affect even the humbler crafts, such as decorative painting. True, painters still climb ladders, dip their brushes into cans of paint and wipe stained hands on their overalls, but they have a dizzying array of specialty materials and tools from which to choose. It doesn't matter that few of these products were developed specifically for stenciling; like most creative people, stencilers are always on the lookout for new ideas to adapt to their own uses. Although this project began as an updated revision of my book Stencilling: A Harrowsmith Guide , I soon realized that the whole field of stenciling has changed so much that a mere revision wasn't going to be enough. So I decided, instead, to start from scratch and adopt more of a textbook approach to the subject. This would allow me to include not just the nitty-gritty of how to use a stencil but also enough information on materials and related issues to make this a useful reference book and sourcebook. I have tried to organize the subject matter so that both beginner and expert can find what they need without having to sift through sections which may not be relevant to them at the time. The Complete Stenciling Handbook is not the place to look for creative inspiration in the form of finished rooms and projects. Rather, it is meant to be a source of methods that can be applied wherever inspiration leads. There are bound to be some new materials I have overlooked and some traditional methods I have missed, and for that, I apologize. The range of topics here was already large enough that by the time I started working on the final chapters, I had trouble remembering what I had covered in the initial ones. We finally had to draw that line in the sand and finish the book. For all the topics touched on that are not directly concerned with stenciling itself, my comments are necessarily abbreviated and should be considered more of a nudge in the right direction than a comprehensive treatment. For more information on these topics, please see Further Reading. If you find this chapter hard to wade through, skim over it, picking out whatever information you need for the time being, and jump right into the good stuff by grabbing your paints and trying out some of the methods described in subsequent chapters. Just remember that the information is here whenever you need it as a reference. Excerpted from The Complete Stenciling Handbook by Sandra Buckingham All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Before You Start
Tools, Equipment, Materials
Wood Stains
Clear Finishes
Miscellaneous Equipment
Chapter 2 The Basics of Stenciling
Cutting a Stencil
Making a Basic Print
Single Template
When to Use Overlays
Layers of Stencils and Masks
Damage Control
Chapter 3 Light and Shadow
Shadow and Light
Form Shadows
Cast Shadows
Chapter 4 Special Effects
Broken Color
Faux Stone
Embossed Leather
Impasto Methods
Plaster Examples
Textured Examples
Layered Pattern
Heavy Metals
Chapter 5 Traditional Borders
Spacing and Corners
Borders as Frames (for windows, doors, panels, furniture)
Impasto Borders
Creative Borders
Chapter 6 All-Over Patterns
Powdered Ornament
Diaper Pattern
Chapter 7 Freeform Stenciling
Layering Images Without Masks
Layering Images With Masks
Chapter 8 Projection Stenciling
The Stencil
Preparing the Surface
Transferring the Pattern
Stenciling the Images
Chapter 9 Imitation Textiles
Woven Texture
Flat Textiles
Draped Textiles
Textile Characteristics
Borders / Accessories
Chapter 10 Architectural Elements
Faux Moldings
Carved Deocorations
Faux Panels
Plaster Decoration
Gingerbread Borders
Fences and Balustrades
Chapter 11 Faux Marquetry
Real Wood
Faux Wood
Faux Stone (Pietre Dure)
Chapter 12 Faux Tiles
Terra-Cotta Tiles
Glazed Tiles
Glazed Tiles Antiqued With Crackle Finish
Faux Tiles in 3-D
Mosaic Tiles
Chapter 13 Glass, Ceramic Tile
Etching Glass
Painting Glass and Glazed Ceramics
Gold Leaf
Impasto Stenciling
Faux Stained Glass and Cloisonné
Chapter 14 Under Foot
Stenciled Floors
Faux Rugs
Hooked Rugs
Chapter 15 Fabric Stenciling
Materials and Preparation
Basic Stenciling
Stenciling Fragile Fabrics
Stenciling Yardage
Discharge Dyeing
Sun Printing
Embroidered Stenciling
Chapter 16 Lettering
Letter Stencils
Chapter 17 Paper
Painted Paper
Leafed Paper
Embossed Paper
Etched Paper
Cut Paper
Further Reading